Despite some dull moments, when it came to character development, Sunday night’s episode of True Blood knocked it out of the park. Tara dealt with her emotions in the aftermath of an attempted suicide, Lafayette revealed a disturbing secret, and Sam discovered his real family.
I’ll begin by discussing my least favorite aspect of the episode—Bill’s kidnapping. "Beautifully Broken" opens with a rather disturbing visual—Bill biting the ear off of a werewolf, who then turns human and writhes on the ground. We are then introduced to a new character, the foppish vampire king of Mississippi, Russell Edgington, who reprimands the werewolf (named Cooter) and then “escorts” Bill back to his mansion. On a horse. Russell thinks that his guest will give him access to the Queen, and in turn he promises to make Bill the sheriff of Mississippi Area Two—whatever that means. Bill is unimpressed, and I am a little bit bored.
We learn later from Eric (in a tension-filled scene with Sookie) that these werewolves are part of a Nazi organization. Unfortunately this explanation involves a flashback to 1945 Germany, where we see Eric and Godric fighting off a lady werewolf. The flashback is kind of a throwaway scene. It would have been just as effective if Eric had simply stated that he’d had run-ins with this group before.
During Eric and Sookie’s little tête-à-tête, Pam excuses herself and Jessica from the situation, saying, “Let’s go to the ladies' room and stare at ourselves in the mirror.” She then gives Jessica a lesson in how to not kill someone while feeding on them, as well as telling her how to get rid of a body. Jessica promptly goes home and rents a chainsaw. This cannot end well.
Meanwhile Lafayette has discovered Tara trying to down a bottle of pills. After forcing her to throw them up, he carries her to his car and away from the toxic Etta Mae. After Tara calms down he wisely states that “life ain't not havin’ problems, Tara. It’s about being able to deal with the ones you got… look, the Buddhists weren’t lying when they said life is suffering. It don’t mean you get to check out early, and leave me here.”
He then takes Tara to visit his racist, homophobic mother in a mental hospital. “You think I could end up like her,” Tara says softly. “There’s a darkness in this family,” he responds. But that’s why he needs her to fight—to live. The scenes between Lafayette and Tara were the best scenes this episode, I thought. Lafayette has gone from a mostly one-dimensional character in the first season to one of the most interesting and well-rounded characters this season. And Tara—well, I am hoping that Tara can get past the death of Eggs, because I have to say that I haven’t really been interested in her since season one. I want plucky Tara back.
Sookie and Jason also have a nice reunion in this episode. As they finally clean up after Mary Anne, Sookie explains how awful it is not knowing where Bill is. This gives birth to a wonderful nod to the audience in Sookie’s line, “I keep expecting him to come through the door and say, ‘Sookeeeh.’”
Sam reunites with his family this episode, but his brother doesn’t seem too happy about the situation. Fortunately the two find a way to bond—by shape shifting.
Later, Bill is still being "held captive" by the Mississippi vampire king, and getting served delicacies like blood gelato. The scene is pretty much a snooze-fest until Lorena shows up, at which point Bill throws a lantern at her and she goes up in flames. Is this the standard vampire ex greeting?
Later on Eric comes over to the Stackhouse abode to inform Sookie that the Nazi werewolves are coming for her, stating, “You’re going to invite me in, to protect you. Or have primal, uninhibited sex with you.” Ah yes, the writers know their audience. The whole thing is actually sweeter than it sounds though. Eric seems genuinely upset at the thought of Sookie getting mauled. Fortunately, she’s not “too blond” to fire a gun, and the last scene we are left with involves her shooting a pistol at one of the precocious pups.
Tune in next week for more True Blood.